Match ends, AEK Larnaka 0, West Ham United 2.
West Ham took a big step towards the quarter-finals of the Europa Conference League with a comfortable first-leg victory at AEK Larnaca.
Michail Antonio scored two first-half goals for David Moyes’ side, who have now won all nine of their matches in the competition this term.
It was no more than the Hammers deserved with Antonio almost adding a third after the break when he drove a low effort against the right-hand post.
The Cypriot hosts caused the visitors some early problems but West Ham grew in confidence and took the lead when unmarked Antonio headed Said Benrahma’s left-wing delivery into the right corner.
With the Premier League side searching for a second, Pablo Fornals drove wide of the left post moments before Antonio doubled the lead when he collected a pass on the edge of the area and superbly curled an effort around his marker into the top-right corner.
Having made wholesale changes to his starting line-up, Moyes also made several substitutions after the break to keep players fresh – the Hammers’ top priority clearly being to retain their Premier League status.
The changes impacted on their overall control of the game, but they were still organised enough to hold off their spirited opponents and create openings, with Lucas Paqueta missing a late opportunity to add to the scoring.
Nevertheless, having gone close to Europa League glory last term by reaching the semi-finals, Moyes will have been pleased with his side’s overall performance.
The Scot has made no secret of his ambition to win this competition – which would also provide a route back into Europe next term – and on the evidence of this season it would be difficult to back against them becoming the first English side to lift the trophy.
Player of the match
Squad number99Player nameNikolicAverage rating
Squad number12Player nameRafael LopesAverage rating
Squad number66Player nameMamasAverage rating
Squad number6Player nameSanjurjoAverage rating
Squad number10Player nameTrickovskiAverage rating
Squad number15Player nameMilicevicAverage rating
Squad number7Player nameGus LedesAverage rating
Squad number44Player nameJakolisAverage rating
Squad number16Player nameRosalesAverage rating
Squad number4Player nameTomovicAverage rating
Squad number11Player nameFarajAverage rating
Squad number51Player nameAltmanAverage rating
Squad number21Player nameEnglezouAverage rating
Squad number5Player nameCasasAverage rating
Squad number24Player nameChristoforouAverage rating
Squad number1Player namePiricAverage rating
West Ham United
Squad number9Player nameAntonioAverage rating
Squad number22Player nameBenrahmaAverage rating
Squad number41Player nameRiceAverage rating
Squad number27Player nameAguerdAverage rating
Squad number13Player nameAréolaAverage rating
Squad number8Player nameFornalsAverage rating
Squad number28Player nameSoucekAverage rating
Squad number20Player nameBowenAverage rating
Squad number10Player nameLanziniAverage rating
Squad number12Player nameDownesAverage rating
Squad number14Player nameCornetAverage rating
Squad number24Player nameKehrerAverage rating
Squad number7Player nameScamaccaAverage rating
Squad number3Player nameCresswellAverage rating
Squad number11Player nameLucas PaquetáAverage rating
Squad number4Player nameZoumaAverage rating
- 5CasasSubstituted forFarajat 59′minutes
- 66MamasSubstituted forAltmanat 59′minutes
- 7Ledes Evangelista dos Santos
- 16RosalesSubstituted forChristoforouat 88′minutes
- 44JakolisSubstituted forTrickovskiat 77′minutes
- 12Guimarães LopesSubstituted forNikolicat 58′minutes
- 24KehrerBooked at 87mins
- 12DownesBooked at 68mins
- 41RiceSubstituted forSoucekat 60′minutes
- 8FornalsSubstituted forCornetat 83′minutes
- 10LanziniSubstituted forLucas Paquetáat 77′minutes
- 22BenrahmaSubstituted forBowenat 60′minutes
- 9AntonioSubstituted forScamaccaat 60′minutes
- 11Lucas Paquetá
- Espen Eskås